The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has re-issued warnings against using public charging ports in places such as airports, malls and hotels due to malware threats.
‘Bad actors have figured out ways to use public USB ports to introduce malware and monitoring software onto devices’ the FBI Denver posted to Twitter.
The FBI went on to urge the public to carry their own respective charger and USB Cord or to use an electrical outlet instead. This practice of hacking through such public charging ports was termed ‘juice jacking’, and it is not the first time it has been warned against.
Avoid using free charging stations in airports, hotels or shopping centers. Bad actors have figured out ways to use public USB ports to introduce malware and monitoring software onto devices. Carry your own charger and USB cord and use an electrical outlet instead. pic.twitter.com/9T62SYen9T
— FBI Denver (@FBIDenver) April 6, 2023
The term was coined back in 2011 after researchers created a charging station to show the potential for hacking at kiosks. The FBI released similar warnings in 2021.
It is actually not clear how common this threat is but it has been suggested that access to a person’s phone through juice jacking can leave personal data vulnerable.